|All Men May Be Cremated Equal. Copyrighted, Isadora Gruye Photography.|
“You heading down the street?" The stranger asks, "heard there’s a church at the end of the block.” She stops pushing her grocery cart which carries cigarette cartons and several pairs of expensive high heels.
“Nah,” I shake my head.
She sits down on the curb next me. “I was thinking about it.”
She shrugs too. We are already best friends, our posture slumps together,our bellies rumble in unison. She sighs and says, “They got canned ham, and they got a minister set up in a big tent. Everybody is guaranteed a meal and a baptism before..... well before, you know.”
I nod. Yes, I know. Months ago it was the bombs, then the nuclear winter. Now the cannibalism, the food scarcity, and the radiation burns on my wrists growing black and beautiful. She has similar sores on her forehead.
“Know what I am going to miss?” she asks, lighting a cigarette, taking a long drag, then handing it to me. “Smoking. I fucking love to smoke.”
I tell her, “I’m going to miss the Wizard of Oz.”
She laughs, the sound resembles the last song I heard on the radio before the blasts. And for a moment, I want to sing along to that tune I didn’t like, if only to keep her laughing.
Poem Spoilerzzzz: I wrote this for my own challenge at Real Toads. I called upon the toads to compose a poem about doomsday which has a happy ending. Those who know me know my sense of happy is a little skewed, but to me this is happy: two drifters having a laugh.